336 days until Christmas?!?

Only 11 months from today? Did that get your attention? If so, perhaps it was with a sigh or with some annoyance?  Why am I reminding you about Christmas 2020 when we are only just done with Christmas 2019?

Remember the charity project we have reported on annually for many years: sewers at Sawyers Sewing Centre in Victoria BC made little zipper baggies which are filled with toiletries etc by Judy and her team to deliver to Sandy Merriman House in Victoria for women and their children in need. Judy has headed up this charity drive for many years but Christmas 2019 was her last one as she is retiring. See pic below of what was delivered last month for Christmas at Sandy Merriman House.


Anyway,  I got to thinking that maybe I (we?) could do something similar for Christmas 2020? I had a bit of down time during the holidays – hope you did too? – so I got tucked into my scrap fabrics stash and started embroidering little in-the-hoop (ITH) zipper baggies. I downsized from a big home to a much smaller townhouse a few years ago and I am somewhat shocked at how much “stuff” I have. Storage remains a bit of a challenge and it has to go somewhere useful, ie, NOT the landfill! There is a tremendous amount of scraps of fabric, stabilizer, ribbons/tapes, zippers etc which are taking up valuable space in my home. This needs to go……STASHBUSTER time! Do you identify with my sentiments?

Now these little bags I am making are much smaller than the ones in the pic above so will not contain nearly as much “goodies” but I was thinking along the lines of “where will I donate all the shampoos, soaps etc that I collect on my travels for Janome Canada and on my family vacations? So I was thinking that a little bag with a soap, shampoo, lotion, etc and maybe a small toothpaste would work very well – like the ones our dentists give us when we visit for check ups or the ones some airlines give on long haul flights? Maybe a little amenity kit some hotels offer with small emery board, a few ear buds, little cotton wool balls? Maybe  a little sewing/mending kit – again some hotels offer these?

My thoughts also went a little further and I wondered if I might be able to secure donations to buy Tim Horton’s gift cards – small denominations – enough for a cup of coffee and a treat perhaps?  To pop into these cute little zipper bags in addition to some toiletries as outlined above? Maybe…..we will see how the year unfolds.

SO……armed with these charitable thoughts, I put my Janome MC15000 and MC550E to work and have  – amazingly – already got close to 100 little baggies done! That really surprized me. Each one takes a mere 8 or 9 minutes to embroider (everything is sewed in the hoop) and the design I am using is just under 4000 stitches. I made 2 just while I waited for hubby to get ready to go out recently (sigh). So these can be done in a jiffy, use up the toe-tapping wait time (now smiling) ………… and before I knew it, I had a pile of them! I think that is a good and promising start to 2020.

These are just a few of what I have embroidered so far. AND it was fun and relaxing to do. AND it is busting a much too large stash! Bonus!

Would you care to join me in my personal journey to de-stash and make a small difference in someone’s life next Christmas? Double whammy?

I am using an embroidery design digitized by Ann Hein of Janome America (thanks, Ann! Your design sure is being put to a lot a good use). If you want to make little baggies like this, please drop me a note in the comment box below and I will send you the embroidery design (jef format) and instructions + time and labour saving tips I have gathered during the holidays as I made these baggies. Maybe you can do something similar in your area? Or maybe you would like to mail any baggies you make to us and we will add them to the collection for donating here: I am currently investigating worthy causes in the Delta/Surrey/Langley area of Metro Vancouver, BC and I have no doubts at all that these little baggies will all find a good home next Christmas.

PLEASE NOTE: there will be a short delay in responding to any comments you send as a result of this post as I’m about to head off on a short vacation. But I promise I will reply in due course. 

I can hardly believe how much fabric I have de-stashed + little “itty” bits of ribbon + even the ends of longer zippers (split in half) for the baggie loop. I am also pleased to have made a big dent in my huge bag of tearaway stabilizer scraps (Yes, I know I save those – neither wonder I need to destash!) I will tell you my tip for using several smaller pieces of stabilizer for one hooping for these bags – easy and waste saving.

You are also most welcome to donate any little hotel toiletries or small toothpaste tubes you may gather over the next 8-10 months as we will definitely use them. Please be sure they will be able to fit into our little bags which measure approx 6 x 4 inches. If you want to donate,  drop a note in the comment box and we will contact you. Many thanks.

336 days to go? Hello Christmas 2020…….Does not sound so bad now, does it?!

Posted in CHARITY SEWING WITH JANOME | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment


The bow tie has become the emblem of the fight against prostate cancer in Quebec . This knot was created by the Canadian designer Philippe Dubuc in order to fight cancer with ‘STYLE’.

logo AD

We love our Janome sewing machines for sewing, creating and quilting……..With our Janome AcuDesign App, specifically the Hipster Style Collection 04, you will find a cute little bow tie design.


This design stitches out very quickly and if you have Embroidery software – Like our Janome Digitizer MBX or Artistic Digitizer, it is possible and easy to edit the design to create other stitch-out options. Here we used Janome Digitizer MBX V5.5 for the editing.


  • Open design > copy & paste > scroll down and delete the green object 
Noeud 1
  • This design is stitches quickly as it is running stitches. You may use as is BUT if you have Embroidery software, it is possible and easy to select scetions of the design and convert to a satin stitch instead of the running stitch we had before. This way you would be preparing to make an applique-in-the-hoop. See below.
  • Then simply copy/paste > invert vertically >position on the left side of the bow tie 
Noeud 2
  • Select the centre part and digitize this part too as a satin stitch.
  • Then select the 3 objects and remove the overlapping parts using the Remove overlap function.  
  • Save the design and embroider as an applique!
2 noeuds

Here are two versions of the Janome bow tie!

Are you having fun with your embroidery software?

Post written by Celine over on Vie Janome blog. Translated and edited by Liz for janomelife.

Posted in ACUDESIGN APP, JANOME EMBROIDERY SOFTWARE | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Janome MC550E monsters……and a variation on the design!


Have you seen our Janome monster stuffies? Janomeman made these (above) using one of the new built-in designs on our Janome MC550E. Many of us have been having fun making even more of them such as this livid lime green/yellow fleece monster complete with hair! 

or these?

While I was stitching these in the BIG RE 36b hoop on the Janome MC550E, I got to thinking…..”what if” I edited the outline of the long skinny monsters above that look a bit like fat worms? What if I omitted the eyes, mouth and dots, made the oval shape a little wider/bigger and then added in my own writing/message? 

I used the alphabet font on the Edit screen of the Janome MC550E although I could certainly have done this using Janome or Artistic embroidery digitizing software too. 

First I stitched the oval placement line as in the pic below. This is important as you need to know where to layer the back of the pillow (or monster) when you are ready to add this.

I added the letters ZZZZZ and some dots….. as my plan was to embroider a lovely soft and fleecy neck roll pillow. I made each Z a different color – all this can be done on the edit screen or in embroidery software. The pic below shows this stitching out.  I used a small piece of water soluble stabilizer on top of the fleece so that the stitches would not sink down into the fluff/pile of the fleece. It tears away very easily when you are done with the embroidery as the needle perforates the stabilizer. And it is water soluble in case some bits remain. 

Lastly, I added another layer of fleece over the top of what had already been stitched in the hoop. It stitches a double line – the outer line is the cutting line and the inner line is the seam of the stuffie, or in this case, my neck roll pillow. It leaves a hole for turning the pillow out to the right side. I slip stitched this closed after I had stuffed the pillow with pillow fill. Yes, I have to admit I very occasionally do the “dirty H word”!


You might notice I am using a different foot here: this is the HIGH shank Convertible free motion foot set with the closed toe. I decided to use this for these thickish fleece monsters and this pillow as I was able to adjust the height of the foot using the spring/screw so that my foot was raised up a bit and allowed more space under the foot for the thicker fleece.

Are you inspired to make some monster stuffies…….or a comfy neck roll pillow or two?

They sure are quick and fun to make.

Posted in Janome Sewing Machine | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

The Janome MC9450 Workbook is Here!


If you’ve got a Janome MC9400 or MC9450 you already know what a great machine it is but do you know how to use all of its features? Sure, the manual will tell you about the features but you really need to work with these features to become comfortable using them (and you do want to use all those features, don’t you?). Fortunately, the Janome Horizon Memory Craft 9450 QCP Workbook is now available in Canada.


You’ve probably heard about the various workbooks that Janome has for different machine models but you may not have seen the Horizon Memory Craft 9450 QCP Workbook yet. Before you ask if you can also use this workbook for the MC9400, the answer is “yes!”. This workbook is helpful for both of these Janome machines.

Janome 9450 front

You may be wondering why you would want this workbook. You already have the machine manual, so what use would a workbook be? Because it’s a workbook! Unlike the manual, the workbook gives you practical exercises that walk you through how to use the various features on the Janome MC9450 to quilt, monogram, and use the many other features on this model.

Janome MC9450 workbook - 4

I really think that the best way to learn about the features on a new Janome sewing machine is to use them and the workbook shows you exactly how to do this.

Janome MC9450 workbook - 2

The Horizon Memory Craft 9450 QCP Workbook has a table of contents that allows you to quickly find the section that you want to explore. Once there, you’ll find information including photos or graphics and an exercise so you actually stitch using that feature. I like that the workbook has larger type in it and lots of explanatory images. So helpful!

Janome MC9450 workbook - 1

While the Horizon Memory Craft 9450 QCP Workbook is an optional purchase, I believe that it is essential to have in your studio – right next to your Janome MC9450 machine manual. You can purchase this workbook from your local Janome dealer. If he/she doesn’t currently have it in stock, they will be glad to order one for you.

It’s easiest to show you the valuable information in the Horizon Memory Craft 9450 QCP Workbook so click on the image below to watch a video explaining more about it. Janome 9450 Workbook

Talk to your local Janome dealer about purchasing the Janome Horizon Memory Craft 9450 QCP Workbook. You’ll be glad to have this reference in your studio!

Please note: this workbook has been exceptionally popular and is selling out as quick as we bring more into Janome Canada! It is currently out of stock but please place your order with your dealer. We do have more on order and we hope to receive this by early March. A reprinting is currently underway as the first printing sold out completely. We thank you for your patience. Ed. 

Happy creating from Kim Jamieson-Hirst, a Janome Canada Artisan in Calgary, Alberta.

Posted in Janome Horizon MC9450QCP | Tagged , , , , , | 8 Comments

Sew Comfortable templates for Rulerwork

You may have seen many posts before today about our Janome Rulerwork kit. You have indicated to us that you wish to know about new products and tools you may wish to use in your sewing room …….so today we show more tools available in our Sew Comfortable range of accessories. You may not have seen these items before as they are brand new to Janome.

We are happy to add more rulerwork accessories to what we already offer: The Sew Comfortable range of rulers or templates for rulerwork. We have the rulers for use on our domestic sewing machiens as well as the thicker ones needed for our longarm quilting machines. Here is a pictorial overview below. Also check out this quilt little video and, of course, be sure to ask your local Janome dealer about any you see and would like to possibly purchase.

This block marker is very important to mark your block before beginning your ruler quilting. It is simialr to the one in the Janome Rulerwork kit but is now also available as a separate item for purchase.

This Spin E flex template is very popular and is available as a separate item

This gives a little more info on the Spin E flex 12 above – super cool quilting patterns are very easy to achieve.

Different size of Spin E flex.

And this is the Spin E flex 10 template – also available as a separate purchase for another variety of quilting possibilities.

And a different size of Spin E flex.

Circels are always SO popular. And very difficult to achieve a perfect quilted circle without the help from a template such as this!

Just look what you can do with the template/ruler above! Makes me think of spirographs when I was young.

And now we move to the thicker templates suitable for longarm quilters like our AQSD16 and AQSD18, as well as our stand up quilters like the QMP18

Here is a close up of the nesting rings above. They look a little “milky” – dont worry, that is because I did not peel off the protective plastic backing before taking the pics

And these are the nesting half circle rings.

An dhere is the VERY useful straight ruler with stop satrt indents so you dont over-shoot your spot. PERFECT for ditch and echo quilting

These are the multi clamshells. See below for ideas of how versatile this template is.

And our wave template – perfect for loads of designs at your longarm!

And multiple swag options in one package!

Swag design ideas

Mini scallop ruler with design ideas below.

And the invaluable straight template – Can you free motion a straight line without help from a tool?

And last, but by no means least, is the nesting oval templates

If you manage to scroll all the way down looking at this bumper selection of NEW quilting tools, I think you will agree that we got you covered with our SEW COMFORTABLE ACCESSORIES. Ask your local Janome dealer to order any you would like to purchase.


Posted in Janome Ruler work | Tagged , , , | 12 Comments

Sew Comfortable Cutting templates for quilting and applique

See our previous posts about our Janome Sew Comfortable accessories here and here.

And a short video overview..

Today we show you the various sets of quilting templates that are available to make the cutting of your quilting pieces for blocks and appliques SEW much easier.

This is Part # JA-TRIE  which has 4 different sized triangles in this set ranging from 2 – 5 inch even equilateral triangles. (Amazed I remembered my math from all those years ago – each side of the triangle is the same length and all 3 angles are 60 degrees?!)

I flipped the one over so you can see the non-slip surface which grips nicely onto the fabric you intend to cut with your rotary cutter  >>>> precision cutting. These templates include the 1/4 inch seams.

And there is another set of triangular cutting templates in 2.5 inch – 5.5 inch sizing.  These templates include the 1/4 inch seams.  Part # JA-TRI

And another set  – this time squares with 1/4 inch seams included – in sizing from 2 – 5 inches. Finished sizes 1,5 – 4.5 inch squares.  Part # JA-SQE

And the larger one with 2.5 – 5 inch squares.  Part # JA-SQ. Precision cutting at your fingertips with non- slip under surface. Win – win I’d say!

Contact your local Janome North America dealer for more information and to order these nifty tools. 

Posted in Janome Sew Comfortable accessories | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Part 2 of Quick and Easy T-Shirt Tote Bag

Today I’ll be finishing the cute T-Shirt tote bag I wrote about in an earlier post this week. here on Janome Life. If you haven’t done so yet, be sure to click on the “Follow” button to the right of your screen so you don’t miss a post!


Many Janome machines come with what can feel like an overwhelming selection of decorative stitches – when to use them all? – so stitching the sections for the inside pockets of the tote seemed a perfect place to test them out! Why just use a straight stitch? The thicker, more dense decorative stitches add more stability and strength to the pockets, as well, which are prone to more wear and tear.

The Janome Continental M7P has a special “Hand-Look” stitch category with 52 stitches from which to choose, so I tried out a few using the recommended “F”, or Satin Stitch foot, which comes with many Janome machines. Many of the Hand-Look stitches are similar to the decorative stitches found on many Janome machines, but they’re “tweaked” with a slightly more casual, rustic charm.



Continuing with the “Hand-Look” theme, I used a triple stitch followed by a single stitch, (highlighted stitch #7, but may be a different number on your machine) which we use to create the look of hand-quilting with invisible thread in the needle. There’s been many posts on Janome Life about this, so be sure to check out the link here for more information.


I elected to forgo the invisible thread, however, to create a different look by using the same thread in the needle as in the bobbin, which was one of the delicious multi-colour Cotona, 100% Egyptian Cotton threads by Madeira.


Did you know Janome Canada is a distributor of Madeira threads? Check with your dealer as there’s a Madeira thread for every purpose; serging, quilting, embroidery, etc.


With knits, I usually use a Janome Blue Tip (sz11) which has a slightly rounded ball point tip, but, given I backed my T-Shirt with fusible fleece and would be stitching through multiple layers when I came to line it and when constructing the handles, I used the beefier Janome Red Tip (sz14) instead without any issues. No skipped stitches, etc. Janome needles, manufactured by Organ, are available from any Janome dealer. It’s great to have a variety on hand, especially if, like me, you sew late at night long after the stores are closed.

I hope you found this project idea inspiring! For another T-Shirt project, check out previous posts on Janome Life when I made aT-Shirt Quilt using a serger, then bound it using theJanome Quilt Binder Set. Also, be sure to check out and subscribe to my NEW You Tube channel Janomeman aka Michael Smith for more fun and informative videos.
SO many T-Shirts, SEW little time! It’s wonderful Janome can help us make the most out of both!

Happy Sewing!


Posted in Decorative stitches, Janome Continental M7 | Tagged , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Quick and Easy T-Shirt Tote Bag On the Fabulous NEW Janome Continental M7P

Looking for a fun, quick and easy project which won’t break the bank? How about turning a T-Shirt – old or new – into a handy, environmentally-friendly tote?

Creative inspiration struck as I skimmed through the racks of one of my favourite discount clothing stores. I spotted these gems in the Clearance section for $8 each. SCORE! My older sister was, and still is, a Blondie fan and I always thought Debbie Harry was the sexy rocker version of my idol, Marilyn Monroe, so I just HAD to get these T-Shirts. It’s cool that my 25 year old niece is also a Blondie fan, so I knew that transforming these T-Shirts into tote bags would make some very special gifts.


Once I cut apart the T-Shirts, I backed them with fusible fleece, then trimmed to the size I wanted. I purposely made them different as I didn’t use a pattern for these bags and just made them up as I went along. As I’ve often said, one of the joys of sewing is that YOU’RE the designer; you are in complete creative control!

If you’re one who just absolutely must have a pattern to follow, however, check out our Janome Artisan, Celine Allaert of Blue Calla Patterns, based in Toronto, ON, who has many fun, useful tote bag patterns from which to choose.

The back of the T-Shirt was blank, so indeed the perfect blank canvas to try out some special features of the machine and some fun techniques. I reached for one of my favourite accessories, the Janome Ruler Work Kit.



One reason I love quilting with rulers and templates is that they’re sew easy to use and make me look like a better free-motion quilter than I really am. I’m still practicing, still learning, but I find that having a guide to follow is a great confidence booster and less intimidating as you never have to worry about where to go, what to do next. All that design work and thinking has been done for you; you just have to follow the ruler/template to do the stitching. We’ve done many posts on Janome Life on ruler quilting so be sure to check them out for more information!

I stitched these bags on the FABULOUS new Janome Continental M7P, but the accessories and techniques I used could be done with many Janome machines.

Photo courtesy of Sew4Home

The Janome Continental M7P‘s HUGE 13.5″ throat space and accompanying huge extension table make quilting – ruler or otherwise – a joyful breeze! I just LOVE that handy accessories drawer to keep the extra needle plates and my favourite, most-used presser feet with-in easy reach. Check out the recent review from Sew4Home, and you’ll easily understand why I describe this machine as FABULOUS! There’s lots of convenient, time-saving features built-in, as demonstrated in the video below. (Now would be a good time to point out that I was sick while filming these little videos, so I’m sorry for my voice being a little shaky. Nothing will stop me sharing the Janome love! lol!)

I used the special QR Ruler Foot, which comes with the machine, and my favourite template from the Janome Ruler Work Kit, the Spin-E-Fex, to create my design, then echo quilted around the outside edge. I didn’t even have to change the foot, as you will see in the video below, though the Janome Continental M7P comes with a variety of free-motion quilting feet, which I also could have used instead.

Janome M7 Presser Feet



Join me again soon for Part 2 (on Friday 10 January )as I finish this quick and easy T-Shirt tote. I’ll share more tips and more fun using decorative stitches on the NEW Janome Continental M7P!

Happy Sewing!











Posted in Janome Continental M7, Janome Ruler work | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

Announcing the winners of the Madeira thread boxes

Congrats to Lynda K; Shelley S and Barb F — you are the lucky winners of our Madeira thread box draw. We have emailed you to ask for your mailing addresses and we will ship one of our 3 Madeira thread box sets to you as soon as we hear back from you. Please respond within one week – ie by Monday 13th January or we will draw another winner. Many thanks.

Thank you all for entering and commenting about your Janome’s etc. It was great to see that we had a record number of entries for this draw. We did delete a few that had duplicate entries – as we explained in our “rules”: fair is fair and only 1 entry per person was eligible to enter – But all eligible entries were counted in the draw.

Even though you may not have won one of our Holiday Giveaway of Madeira thread boxes, we hope you will ask your local Janome or Elna Canada dealer about these products.  We plan to do more janomelife posts in 2020 so you know what is available and what you can ask your dealer to order for you.

All 3 of these Madeira thread collections are available as I write this announcement.  Your local Janome or Elna Dealer can contact their Janome Canada Sales Rep to order for you! No, sorry, we don’t sell through this Janomelife blog. You need to buy at one of our Janome or Elna stores nationwide in Canada. If your favourite store does not stock these threads and stabilizers, feel free to encourage them to do so! It is fabulous quality and has not disappointed us after many years of happy embroidering and sewing!

Posted in Janomelife Giveaway | Tagged , , , | 7 Comments

Presser Foot Versatility with Janome

One thing I hear over and over again from Janome fans is that they love, love, LOVE all the presser feet which came with their machines! Even Janome’s “entry level” machines, such as the adorable Janome Blue Couture, or Janome Arctic Crystal machines come with

4 standard and 4 BONUS presser feet, such as the 3-Way Cording Guide and Gathering Foot. These “specialty” presser feet are not included with most machines, but are available as an additional purchase from your Janome dealer, as well.

Janome presser feet are some of the most economically priced in the market, so don’t feel guilty about treating yourself to all which are available for your machine. Many of the same presser feet are available for the 9mm, 7mm, and even the 5mm models, so be sure to check with your dealer and consult our bilingual Janome Accessories Guide so you get the correct size presser feet and accessories for your machine.

Janome Accessories Guide

Another terrific resource is the Janome Presser Foot Workbook, and additional supplements, such as the Specialty Feet Addendum, which describes in detail when and how to use the above mentioned Janome 3-Way Cording Guide and Janome Gathering Foot, for example. It’s an excellent reference guide to keep near your machine, especially since you may not use these presser feet, like the Piping Foot, all the time, so it’s easy to forget which machine settings work best, etc. Click HERE to read the article Sew4Home wrote about it.

Janome Presser Foot Workbook

Though Janome pretty-much has a presser foot or an attachment, like the Quilt Binder Set,which helps bind quilts faster than you ever thought possible, for example, for every need, I sometimes use certain presser feet in ways not specifically intended.

For example, I love using my “G” foot, or Blind Hem Foot to get a perfect Edge-Stitch approximately 1/8″ away from the fabric edge, as shown in the photo below.

027 (2)

I use a basic straight stitch, which in this case is stitch#1 with a centre needle position of 4.5, but I move my needle over to the left to 1.0, so it just clears the black metal guide of the foot. I sewed this T-Shirt tote bag on the new Janome Continental M7P, but this adjustment can be made on many other Janome machines, as well.


The strap of the tote bag I was sewing was quite bulky, so to keep the presser foot level, I love using the Button Shank Plate, which comes included in so many Janome machines, and is also available in a separate blister pack from your Janome dealer. I’ve written about the versatility of the Janome Button Shank Plate (it’s known as many names, but this is the one I often see in the manuals) in previous Janome Life posts on sewing tote bags/ heavy duty sewing, garment sewing, and most recently in my 3-part series on Skipped Stitches.

To add further rows of Top-Stitching, I often use the Janome 1/4″ Inch Foot, or “O” Foot, which has the convenient black metal guide at the side of the foot to keep your stitching straight and an accurate 1/4″ away from the fabric edge. However, instead of using the automatic 1/4″ stitch, which would move the needle 1/4″ away from the edge of the foot, (in the Quilt Section of the Janome Continental M7P it’s stitch#2) I instead again used stitch#1 and kept my needle at 4.5. The stitching was further away from the edge of my strap than 1/4″, which is what I wanted, and I could still take advantage of that handy metal guide to help keep my stitching straight.


025 (2)


The Button Shank Plate, “G” Blind Hem Foot and “O” 1/4″ Foot come with MANY Janome machines, but are also available in separate blister packs for those which don’t. Visit your Janome Dealer for more information.

I love, love, LOVE the versatility and flexibility of Janome machines, Janome presser feet and Janome Accessories. They allow us complete creative control to achieve whatever results we desire!

Happy Sewing!

Posted in Janome Sewing Machine, Janome Specialty feet, Janome Workbooks | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments